Inquiry after arrested man tells police: I can’t breathe
FOOTAGE of a man telling police ‘I can’t breathe’ while being restrained has sparked an investigation.
The 28-year-old, who is from the Bame community, was arrested by three officers on suspicion of criminal damage and assaulting an emergency worker in Brighton this week.
In footage, he is heard accusing police of ‘crushing’ his Adam’s apple and yells: ‘Why have you got your arm on my neck bro, I can’t breathe.’
A Sussex Police officer near his head repeatedly tells him his arm is on the suspect’s collarbone and not his throat.
One witness told the Brighton Argus: ‘I couldn’t believe how long they held him down to the ground for. I didn’t understand why they didn’t handcuff him straight away.
‘He didn’t appear to be resisting and was clearly distressed and in pain.’ Sussex Police has referred the incident on Tuesday to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) – but insisted the man had been aggressive.
The force said it had been searching for a vulnerable 17-year-old girl who was found hiding at the man’s home. ‘We train our officers to protect themselves and others using reasonable force and are reviewing this footage, together with body-worn video captured by the officers of the entire interaction, to identify if any further investigation or learning is required,’ it said. Last month, the IOPC launched an inquiry into the death of Simeon Francis (pictured), 35, who died in custody in Devon on May 20. It came after a separate arrest by the same force in July last year when he was filmed telling police: ‘I can’t breathe.’
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